With all the craziness and polarization this election season, I hope everyone here in Florida remembers how lucky we are to live in this state. Each morning, I leave my home before dawn and ride my bike with my dog, quietly in the gauzy haze of the remaining darkness. We head into the woods with the sound of owls in the background only to break out of the sweet damp earthiness to see ponds as the early morning blankets the smooth surface with a golden glow. I saw a Florida panther yesterday, reclining on the grassy bank, silhouetted against the shrouded woods. Today, I saw a red fox, alerted from hunting in the grasses. Herons sit on fallen trees like still specters, looking for their opportunities as the cool air blows on my face. One early morning, an alligator was bowed up like a National Geographic documentary, its mouth wide and scales sticking up like a prehistoric dinosaur.
We live in a wondrous and beautiful state. I hope we all have the opportunity to appreciate it and put aside differences and problems as we rejoice in our special and always surprising state of Florida.